My last blog, which covered the first-part to this three-part research approach, discussed knowing the what before the where to your legal research. Because this research approach is most effective when followed sequentially, it is best
As beginning law students soon learn, what we call “legal reasoning” can be expressed by the formula IRAC. It stands for Issue, Rule, Application, and Conclusion. It is the format used by lawyers in preparing legal memoranda. And the structure that most judges use in drafting judicial opinions. It’s also the
You can, and will, be successful on your multiple-choice law examinations by always choosing the best answer that is: Most responsive to the call of the question;A correct statement of applicable law; and (not “or”)Best supported by the facts presented. Contextually, this post
Whether you are excited by the idea of take-home essay exams or frightened by it, you may have some questions about the best way to prepare. I have compiled a list of tips and suggestions that apply generally to take-home exams. These tips should not take the place
In normal times, who doesn’t love the idea of telecommuting? The prospect of WFHing in pants with an elastic waistband alongside what used to be an unlimited supply of snacks while the laundry hums productively in the background—on someone else’s dime—is everyone’s dream. Or
In the podcast, I talk about looking at law school exams as a rite of passage and also compare them to the Ming dynasty’s civil service exam.
In a recent article for The American Lawyer, Joanna Litt recounted the suicide of her husband. She attributed his death to the stresses of his law practice and of being a partner in big law. I saw this article posted at first by a single former law school
Your first final exams are coming up, 1Ls! It's time to mind your minutes, study the past, start formulating answers, and pay attention to your professors – and get that first good grade.
You’re probably a mere three weeks from your law school exams. So everything you’re reading and doing should be helping you ace your law school examinations. Let me help. Below are three things you can do to ensure you ace your law school exams:
To avoid wreaking havoc on your classmates in the law library and to assist in providing a platform for venting in the comment section below, I have tallied a few of the more egregious instances of misconduct.
If you are like I was when I was a 1L, the scariest thoughts involve the first set of exams. The unknown questions, the time crunch, especially imagining the wide range of essay questions your professors could ask you and how exactly to tackle them, is enough to give you nightmares.
Taking your first round of law school exams? Get the inside scoop on what to expect and how to prepare in this webinar, "Tips for Preparing for Your First Law School Exam."
The phrases “legal research” or “legislative research” often conjure up images of signing into an online subscription resource to find everything one might need; however, using subscription resources is not a viable option for all lawyers in all situations. Luckily, several websites provide free and reliable legal and legislative information for
Here are five ways to use this necessary companion to Google-like searching and be more confident that you’ve scoured the research landscape.
You probably know that outlining is an important part of the writing process. An outline helps you organize your writing and identify gaps in your analysis. The more complex the material you are writing about, the more important your organization is—and legal analysis is often complex. Most writers outline at
Getting into law school is thrilling. You’ve been preparing for this moment a long time. After the giddiness wears off, you may start to feel a bit apprehensive. That’s because law school is an extremely competitive environment. It’s truly a jungle where the law of the land includes survival of
In most law school seminars, the instruction of legal writing usually gets broken down into technical details. However, legal writing—just like every other form of writing—is more art than science. You must learn how to tell a story, appeal to an audience, and—after you’ve gotten the mechanics of analysis down—trust your instincts. Over almost a decade of
Wise choices of law school courses can optimize grades and increase preparation for the bar exam and future legal practice.
The semester’s halfway point is fast approaching. Students need to take stock now and begin serious exam preparation. First, analyze three aspects of your academics to gather information for planning your studies. Then, determine the study priorities for each course and choose appropriate study strategies to accomplish those priorities. Analyze your
Many law students never outlined courses when they were undergraduates because tests were frequent and noncumulative so cramming from class notes worked well. Infrequent law school-style exams make cramming from class notes and briefs unwise. First, one exam covering 15 weeks of material translates to
Realize that law school requires a different commitment to your studies. For many law students, prior college courses were not essential to their futures. They could cram at the end of the semester, “brain dump” for a good grade, and then forget what they learned because they never planned to
Taking courses that will give you an edge in your (so-far) chosen specialty is just one smart way to choose electives.
There are techniques to improve your exam results in May. If you implement them diligently, your grades can increase with any exam format.
“Study groups” are a long-standing tradition in law school. The term, however, is a misnomer; law students actually complete daily class preparation alone. They later use study group time to review and consolidate course material.
What is the most important lawyerly skill you might acquire in law school? I say it's the art of reading cases knowledgeably––especially cases involving textual interpretation. It’s unfortunate that textual interpretation is largely neglected in legal education. Professor Mary Ann Glendon of has written: “Most of our fellow citizens . .